Agricultural insurance revisited: new developments and perspectives in Latin America and the Caribbean M. Wenner, Sustainable Development Department, Inter-American Development Bank , 2005 This paper focuses on agricultural production risk management, explaining key concepts, understanding why crop insurance markets have been slow to develop, and making recommendations about how to build sustainable markets in developing […]
This study provides an in-depth review of microinsurance by analysing a range of case studies and examining the benefits and limitations of microinsurance. It provides clear evidence of the value and potential of microinsurance in transferring risk and protecting low-income households and businesses against disaster losses. Microinsurance can provide access to post-disaster finance, protecting assets and livelihoods as well as providing funds for reconstruction. Because insured households are more creditworthy, insurance can also promote investments in productive assets.
While increasingly grim forecasts predict agricultural declines in southern Africa due to climate change, a farming method called Conservation Agriculture (CA) is showing promise for subsistence farmers who are already struggling with poor food security. A recent study by economist William R. Cline, 'Global Warming and Agriculture: Impact Estimates by Country,' predicts a 39-47 percent decline in agriculture in southern Africa by 2080 if greenhouse gases escalate at their current pace. That is potentially deadly news for farmers in southern Africa where the population threatened by food shortages.
Managing risk is therefore important not only for smoothing out the well-being of these farmers over the good and the bad years, but also for enabling their escape from extreme poverty. If the risks facing poor farm households can be reduced, their creditworthiness can be increased. And increased creditworthiness permits them to invest in higher-yield activities, including higher value-added farming. For these reasons and others, including a probable rise in the volatility of climate shocks accompanying human-induced climate change, financial risk management is likely to come to the forefront of strategies for poverty reduction.
The most important factor of efficient feed production is reliable supply of feedstock, including forage grain and oilseed mill, especially soybean mill. Sustainable yield of grains and oilseeds in recent years created favorable conditions for compound feed production. Simultaneously, one has to admit that such dependence on forage grain to a large extent determines trends not only in the animal husbandry sector but also has an adequate impact on selling prices of animal husbandry products. For instance, high prices for forage grain in 2003/04 MY because of an extremely low harvest in 2003.
This year's expiration of federal agriculture policies gives Congress an important opportunity to take a fresh look at the $25 billion spent annually on farm subsidies. Current farm policies are so poorly designed that they actually worsen the conditions they claim to solve. Farm subsidies are intended to alleviate farmer poverty, but the majority of subsidies go to commercial farms with average incomes of $200,000 and net worths of nearly $2 million. Farm subsidies are intended to raise farmer incomes by remedying low crop prices. Instead, they promote overproduction and therefore lower prices further.
The rapid spread of large-scale industrial livestock production focussed on a narrow range of breeds is the biggest threat to the world’s farm animal diversity, according to a report presented today to the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. Surging global demand for meat, milk and eggs has led to heavy reliance on high-output animals intensively bred to supply uniform products, according to The State of the World’s Animal Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. The problem is compounded by the ease with which genetic material can be moved around the world, which draws on information from 169 countries.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Risk Management Agency, which administers the crop insurance program, uses satellite imaging technology to monitor farm acreage that is involved in a farmer's crop insurance claim. The images have been used in courts to determine crop insurance fraud. Since 2001, less than 100 cases that used satellite images have been prosecuted. However, teamed with data mining, the agency has put about 1,500 farms on watch for suspected fraud. Its spot check list, developed through the use of the images, has saved taxpayers $71-$110 million a year in fraudulent crop insurance claims since 2001.
All countries, both industrialized and developing, support their agriculture sectors, but use vastly divergent policy tools and combinations of tools. Most use guaranteed minimum prices and import tariffs to protect domestic producers. Developing countries use a plethora of tools often not considered in measuring the amount or rates of subsidies. These include input subsidies, such as reimbursement for seed, fertilizer, equipment and labor. Producers in some developing countries also get tax incentives or low interest loans.
Numbers released by Statistics Canada on Monday show that realized net income for Canadian farmers fell for the second consecutive year in 2006 to its lowest level since 2003. Rising interest, wage and fuel costs, together with falling hog receipts and program payments, more than offset increases in revenue from crops and cattle. Realized net income (the difference between a farmer's cash receipts and operating expenses minus depreciation, plus income in kind) declined from 2005 to $1.1 billion. This figure was also below the previous five-year average between 2001 and 2005.
There is a consensus about the crisis which the Agricultural sector is facing in India. The contribution to GDP has been falling and it is under 20% of the GDP now. The sector provides employment to about 60% of the population. Most of the farmers under this sector fall under the ‘informal sector’ where there is a dearth of reliable statistics. This can be one of the causes for the low share of agriculture in the GDP. From the figures of employment and ‘contribution to GDP’, we can conclude that there is the presence of a high degree of disguised unemployment.
Insurance of crops in developing countries R.A.J. Roberts, FAO, Rome, 2005 Risk management is of crucial importance in the investment and financing decisions of farmers in developing countries and in transition economies. Basic risk management measures in agriculture include choice of plant varieties and animal breeds, crop and animal husbandry practices, diversification of farm enterprises […]
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